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Backup the cloud data - Definitely!


Security Shield
Security

The risk of not backing up cloud solutions, such as Microsoft 365, is underestimated by some companies. In this article, some of the most important reasons for backing up the cloud are addressed and clarified in the context of the Microsoft 365 cloud.


General:

Even though Microsoft announced, "Microsoft 365 Backup" and "Microsoft 365 Archive" features for the second half of 2024 at the "Microsoft Ignite" held in July 2023, Microsoft does not offer backup functionalities in the cloud to date.

This means that if a user deletes data or (albeit very unlikely) a Microsoft Cloud data center were to fail, there is a risk of data loss. Of course, Microsoft puts great emphasis on the availability of data but does not back it up. File versioning or the recycle bin in the cloud also have nothing at all to do with a backup.


Legal:

The responsibility of the data lies with the data owner, which at this moment is the tenant subscriber. Microsoft does offer the highest possible availability of its services and ways to protect individual users from short-term data loss. The data owner (the company) is responsible for its own data.

By law, a retention period of several years is required for companies, provided that the data is relevant for the business. Most companies that opt for a "cloud strategy" must therefore already have sufficient backup anyway.

Die Tabelle der Verantwortlichkeiten
Overview

Risks:

In addition to the legal part, there are risks which can be significantly reduced or even eliminated by a backup. Risks such as hacker attacks, ransomware or malware infestation are always an issue today and will remain an issue when using the cloud.

It is also important to note that potential employee tampering (whether malicious or accidental) can pose a risk.

In the case of data such as deleted email inboxes or Microsoft Teams structures, it is usually even necessary to keep them for a longer period and also back up changes.


Approach:

With Microsoft 365, one should make sure to back up all data if possible and outsource it. In doing so, the tool is usually the deciding factor as to what is possible and what is not. We use Acronis Cyber Protect for cloud backup. This solution is optimal for us because this is managed directly in the Acronis Cloud via web and backed up from "cloud to cloud". This means that once set up, Acronis can directly export the data from Microsoft independently to their own cloud in the data centers of Switzerland. "Cloud to Cloud" is a very fast and efficient way to extract data, as cloud providers usually have fast interfaces and pipes. If desired, it is of course also possible to back up to one's own server in one's own data center.

When making backups, one must not neglect to regularly test the restore process. Without a working restore, the backup itself is useless. An additional advantage of Acronis is that the data can be restored to any cloud. This means that you are not tied to the existing infrastructure.

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